Good old fruitcake. Or bad old fruitcake. As we all know, fruitcake is one of those things that you either like or you hate, as Allison stated in her fruitcake bread post. I’m one of those who loves fruitcake. At least, I love THIS fruitcake. My mom and I make it every year near the end of November. She lets hers sit to “ripen” for a few weeks, while my loaves are lucky if they see the next day. Haha!
This recipe is my great grandma’s, typed up on an old typewriter, complete with her signature. Now, I have to admit… I’ve never in my 35 years on this earth tasted any other fruitcake, so I’m definitely biased. However, let me say this: My husband never cared for fruitcake until he tried this one. This one he loves. So maybe you can take his word that it’s a good one.
I love the almost stained glass-window-look when you slice into the cake and reveal a cross cut of all those brightly colored candied fruits. This is definitely a sweet cake. Very sweet. But I love it. It’s also satisfyingly heavy. When I make it with my mom, she has 4 smaller loaf pans that we bake it in. But all I have is normal size (8×4) loaf pans, so that’s what I bake mine in. I was curious about how much each loaf weighs, so I got my kitchen scale out. Each loaf weighs in at just over 3 pounds!
I hope you give this recipe a try this Christmastime. If you already like fruitcake, you’ll love this one. And if you don’t care for it, maybe this recipe will change your mind.
Oh! And you can find all the nuts and candied fruit at our store. We have a great selection, so come check it out!
Old Time Fruitcake
- 1 cup vegetable oil
- 1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
- 4 large eggs
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1 cup pineapple, apple, or orange juice (I used orange juice)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup candied citron
- 1 cup candied pineapple
- 1 cup red candied cherries
- 1 cup green candied cherries
- 2 cups raisins
- 1 cup chopped walnuts (optional)
- Preheat oven to 275 degrees F.
- Spray 4 small loaf pans or 2 regular loaf pans with non-stick spray. (The types with flour added work best.)
- In the bowl of your stand mixer, or in a large bowl with a hand mixer, combine oil, brown sugar, and eggs. Beat vigorously for 2 minutes.
- Sift together the 2 cups of flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, allspice, and cloves.
- Stir into the oil mixture alternately with the juice.
- Add the 1 cup of flour to a separate large bowl. To it, add the candied citron, pineapple, cherries, raisins, and walnuts. Stir together with a wooden spoon to coat well with the flour. This will keep the fruits separate and help them from sinking to the bottom of the cake.
- Pour the fruit into the batter and mix thoroughly.
- Place a pan of water on the lowest oven rack.
- Bake cakes for 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
- Cool in pans 15 minutes before removing to a wire rack to cool completely.
- To ensure freshness, seal in plastic wrap and then in foil.
- At this point, you can let your cakes sit to “ripen” in a cool place for 2-3 weeks or you can eat them right away. The choice is yours. As I said above, mine don’t normally live to see the next day.